Comparative Race and Ethnicity Minor

Minor in Comparative Race and Ethnicity

Advisor for 2021-2022:  Peggy Levitt
The interdisciplinary Minor in Comparative Race and Ethnicity examines how power dynamics, operating across time, space, and scales of social experience, shape the categories of race and ethnicity. Approaching racial and ethnic categories as socially constructed, historically situated, and contextually dependent, this minor is designed to engage students in comparative study in two key ways: (1) students will be equipped to examine and analyze racial/ethnic dynamics across national borders and to compare different racial and ethnic regimes, and (2) students will learn to understand race/ethnicity from different disciplinary perspectives, drawing from both the social sciences and the humanities. This minor offers a distinctly global approach to race and ethnicity that is intended to complement U.S.-based critical ethnic studies and other area studies approaches (e.g., American Studies, Africana Studies). It is fitting for any student interested in analyzing the comparative and transnational dimensions of race and ethnicity in combination with the study of race and ethnicity in the United States.
Students who wish to complete a Minor in Comparative Race and Ethnicity should contact the minor advisor(s). Courses for the minor will be selected in consultation with the minor advisor and should represent both social science and humanities perspectives. Students will be strongly encouraged to look comparatively rather than focusing on a specific region.  
The minor is open to students in any major at the College. Sociology majors can complete the Comparative Race and Ethnicity minor so long as no single course counts toward both the major and the minor.

Goals for the Minor in Comparative Race and Ethnicity

The minor in comparative race and ethnicity seeks to educate students to:

  • Understand the social construction of race and ethnicity

  • Introduce students to a variety of disciplinary approaches to understanding and analyzing race and ethnicity

  • Compare processes of racialization across history and geography

  • Understand ethnic and racial conflicts in comparative context

  • Critically analyze the exercise of power and domination, as well as resistance movements

  • Examine how global systems of economic and political power, colonialism, and transnational migration shape race and ethnicity in various places

  • Consider the intersections of race and ethnicity with gender, nation, and class in a global context   

Requirements for the Minor in Comparative Race and Ethnicity

The minor in comparative race and ethnicity consists of five units. See the course catalog for more information about requirements and the list of courses for credit towards the minor.